Rugby League International Junior Sa’u Signs with Old Glory DC

In there first new signing of the season, Old Glory has picked up Junior Sa’u for the 2022 season. The 34-year-old will be switching codes to rugby union after playing rugby league professionally for 14 years. Sa’u primarily played for the Newcastle Knights in Australia’s NRL and the Salford Red Devils in England’s Super League. He has also played for the Melbourne Rebels, Wakefield Trinity, and, most recently, the Leigh Centurions. He also played on the international stage for both New Zealand and Samoa.

Sa’u played center in league, and that’s likely what he’ll play for OGDC as well. While positions in league don’t always translate directly to union, Sa’u physicality lends itself well to that role. He has been described as a strong runner and an excellent tackler, which should make him a perfect addition to the back line.

Code switches aren’t easy, and it can take time for everything to settle into place. However, for a center most of the skills should translate, especially the fundamentals like tackling and ball handling. The MLR is a league where talent and physicality can still overcome a lack of specific rugby knowledge, so it is perfect place for this sort of transition to succeed.

With this addition, Old Glory’s 2022 centers are looking strong. With Doug Fraser and Thretton Palamo returning, Sa’u adds a third experienced option. While the staff will want to ease Sa’u into the lineup instead of just tossing him into the deep end, we can expect that Sa’u will be a major contributor this upcoming season. In a position that was plagued with injury and sometimes lackluster last season, a player with Sa’u’s abilities should help give things a boost.


Curious who has been signed and who is leaving? Check out our 2022 Signings Tracker for all the updates!